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Subitec raises EUR4.5m in second round financing

Subitec, a manufacturer of fully automated algae photobioreactors, has closed a second round of financing totalling EUR4.5m.



The Cleantech-Fonds of eCAPITAL entrepreneurial Partners, Fraunhofer Venture, High-Tech Gründerfonds (HTGF) [High-Tech Start-Up Fund] and KfWBankengruppe’s ERP-Startfonds [ERP Start Fund] participated in the capital increase.

The raised capital is to be used mainly for launching bioreactors on the international market and to extend technological leadership.

“Compared to other energy crops such as maize or wheat, algae are considerably more efficient in creating biomass. To exploit this potential, Subitec has developed highly efficient algae photobioreactors which permit the propagation of algae and the creation of algae biomass at competitive prices on an industrial scale. Together we would now like to encourage the further development of this innovative company”, says Michael Lübbehusen, managing partner of eCAPITAL.

The capital made available would enable Subitec to further extend its market position. Among other things, Lübbehusen further adds that Subitec is making the fully automated operation of algae photobioreactors possible with its patented flat panel airlift process. The creation of biomass is not in competition with food production here. Subitec’s reactors can be operated at locations where no other form of farming is possible.

eCAPITAL acted as lead investor in the current round of financing. KfW Bankengruppe’s ERP-Startfonds took a share in the company in collaboration with eCAPITAL.

Subitec will use the funds from the capital increase among other things to develop the fourth generation of the flat panel airlift reactor.

“The collaboration with our new investors enables us to address international markets and further extend our technological leadership,” says Peter Ripplinger, managing director of Subitec.

Subitec was founded in 2000 as a spin-off of the Fraunhofer Institute for Interfacial Engineering and Biotechnology IGB.

Subitec was already being supported by Fraunhofer Venture in this first phase.

High-Tech-Gründerfonds took a share in the first round of Subitec financing in 2007, and has now extended its commitment.

Conventional algae cultivation in Asia takes place mainly in open ponds. The Subitec algae bioreactor in contrast allows land-based cultivation in closed bioreactors without water loss from evaporation. It can also be operated sterilely, i.e. under conditions essential for the pharmaceutical and cosmetics industries.

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